What is RSS?

RSS is a subscription service, like a newspaper.

RSS actually stands for Really Simple Syndication. Since this does not very much to most people, it's easier to understand it by way of example.

RSS Subscriptions

News, views and interesting topics.

You may have heard about the blogging phenomenon taking hold of the Internet. If not, don't worry — we'll describe that too.

A blog, or weblog, is a running commentary posted by writers on a regular basis.

Some weblogs are just about daily events (almost like online diaries) but others are topical. They talk about business, marketing, digital cameras and everything in between.

One way to keep track of these constant messages is to visit the blog web sites every single day. This is pretty time consuming.

A more effective way to keep track of it all is to subscribe to the RSS feeds of the various weblogs you are interested in.

RSS News Reader

Tech Jargon: RSS news readers are also called aggregators.

Before you can subscribe to a single RSS feed, you need a program called a news reader or aggregator. You can either install one on your computer, or you can register with an online service.

Links to some of the more popular aggregators are available in the column to the right.

A news reading program lets you "subscribe" to as many RSS feeds as you like. It brings all of the RSS feeds together in one spot.

It also notifies you every time the weblog writer publishes a new post. In the same way your e-mail program lets you know about new mail, the aggregator will let you know about breaking news.

Subscribing to RSS Feeds

You've got the reader, now you need the content.

Once you have a news reader, you are ready to subscribe to RSS feeds.

Each news reader allows you to subscribe in a slightly different way. Typically, you will find the RSS feed on a web site and click it to add it to your news reader.

How do you find the RSS feed?

Look for an icon that looks like this: rss feed icon

You can also look for a link that says "Syndicate this site" or links that refer to "RSS 1.0", "RSS 2.0", and "Atom". All of these are indications that the site offers an RSS feed.

So What's The Point?

We would like you to subscribe to our RSS feed.

You may not have noticed, but our entire Question and Answer section on this web site is actually a weblog.

We post regular updates, news and information about issues affecting small businesses, and small business web sites in particular.

If you'd like to stay up to date on all of our latest posts, subscribe to our RSS feed.

You can use our RSS links on the right to subscribe, or look for the XML icons on our Question and Answer page.